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ICAEW Business Confidence Monitor: national

The latest ICAEW Business Confidence Monitor (BCM) shows business confidence returning to positive territory in the first quarter of 2020, after being at its lowest level for a decade at the end of 2019.

Download the latest report

Q1 2020 UK Business Confidence Monitor.


Key findings this quarter

  • Confidence Index rises to +1.3 (from -20.6 last quarter), at least partly due to the general election. Underlying economic fundamentals remain challenging. 
  • GDP may experience a small bounce in Q1, but growth is likely to remain subdued through 2020. 
  • Domestic sales and exports are slowing compared to previous years, and this is leading directly into a duller picture for profits growth.
  • Capital investment remains low due to continuing uncertainty - including over future trade deals, with plans for the year ahead still very weak.
  • Slow growth in investment continues to hurt productivity performance.
  • Concerns over regulations remain the most commonly cited challenge, and will be a factor to watch during this year’s trade negotiations.

Key findings Q1 2020 ICAEW Business Confidence Monitor

Research methodology

Find out about the research methods that underpin the ICAEW Business Confidence Monitor.

Using BCM data

If you'd like to use this data in a publication or share it with clients, please tell us in advance by emailing bcm@icaew.com, and make sure to reference 'ICAEW Business Confidence Monitor' in full whenever you are citing the data.

Taking part in the BCM

If you're an ICAEW member working in industry or commerce you might be called to give an opinion on the economic prospects facing your organisation - please spare a few minutes to take part. Your views will provide information on matters of key concern to a broader businesses community, policy-makers and the media. You'll also be helping ICAEW to promote Chartered Accountants as business people with a serious contribution on business, finance and economic issues.